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Advantages Of Online Education Essay

1085 words - 5 pages

The 2010 Sloan Survey of Online Learning states that approximately 5.6 million students took at least one web-based class during the fall 2009 semester (Orgill and Hervey). The number of students enrolling in online classes continues to grow each year and is predicted to reach 14 million by 2014. Because of technological innovations in recent years, online education is easily accessible to students and offers a wide variety of programs. Online education is an effective alternative to traditional classroom teaching because it has a different environment which allows students to succeed, an extensive amount of classes to choose from, and is profitable for teachers.
Online education allows students to excel and thrive in conditions not available in traditional classrooms. Students can learn on their own schedule and at their own pace. By having the ability to access course materials at any time of the day, students can study in a setting and pace that works for them and can even work a full-time job while taking courses. This is beneficial to students who learn at a slower pace and are falling behind in their courses or students who are achieving above their classmates and learn at a faster pace. Online education has a different expectation about participation, which helps students who are more reserved to be actively listening to a discussion without losing class credit for participation. Studies have shown the effectiveness online education has on student performance. One example is the Florida Virtual School [FLVS], a public statewide online education program. A study was conducted in 2007 by the Florida TaxWatch Center for Educational and Accountability comparing the test scores of students taking advanced placement courses through FLVS with those taking the courses in Florida’s traditional school districts. They found that, “The FLVS advanced placement students scored on average 22 percent higher than Florida’s conventional public school students and 19 percent higher than all Florida students (Van Beek).” The Florida Virtual School is not the only example of the high quality of online education. The US Department of Education reported in 2010 that, “Students in online conditions performed modestly better, on average, than those learning the same material through traditional face to face instruction (Orgill and Hervey).”
Online education gives students access to courses that usually wouldn’t be available in traditional schools. Some school districts in rural areas which don’t have a large course selection can use online programs with courses such as advanced placements, languages, and even art to supplement their students’ education. “A greater selection in course offerings will also motivate students and improve their educational experience. Students display much more enthusiasm when they can self-direct their learning paths (Orgill and Hervey).” Online courses can give students the opportunity to enroll in degree programs from schools...

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